What if my baby wont sleep during his newborn photography session?

I hear these questions more often than not.

What if my baby wont sleep?

What is he's awake the entire session and we don't get those adorable sleepy shots? What if they wont stop crying?

I am here to assure you that you do not need to stress or overthink this. Most babies I've photographed do cry a little, some more than others, and some are more awake than others. However, we always succeed in taking the required shots at the end. How? because it's only normal for a newborn to cry or stay awake for a short time. They are babies and they do what they want. The key is to make sure that all of the necessary factors to achieve a successful nap are taken care of.

Here's a list of things to check for if a baby is fussy, crying, or awake longer than the average one hour window between feeds:

  • Room temperature. Is the studio warm enough?

Most babies do well if the room is well heated and comfortable for them, since they may be naked for some poses. The opposite is also true, When swaddled, or when in knit rompers, it is crucial to check the baby's temperature and make sure they're not overheated.

  • Full feeds. Are they getting enough milk?

This is something I ask parents when newborns are smaller in size, or if they've arrived earlier than scheduled. "Are they getting full feeds?" If they're not getting full feeds, that means they will constantly be asking for more milk. Whereas if their tummy is full, they will fall asleep and stay asleep for longer stretches.

  • Digestive issues. Do I a smell gas?

Most newborns have underdeveloped digestive systems, which makes it harder for them to digest milk, or certain types of milk. That may cause gas which in turn causes discomfort and pain. If a Mom is breastfeeding, it is best if she is more cautious of what she eats the day before the session to avoid the risk of additional discomfort. Some parents use Gas drops, and others rely on moving the legs and exercising, which helps get out the gas.

  • Age. The older the baby, the longer they're awake.

Newborn photography is ideally done 7-14 days after birth. That does not mean that it's not doable after 14 days. While each baby is different, on average, the older aa baby is, the longer they will stay awake, and the more touchy they get, which makes it harder to pose them and move them around without bothering them.

I am not in the Medical field, not do I understand how science works, but one of the most important things which have made a huge difference for Me as a Newborn Photographer when it comes to smooth sessions and sleepy babies, is my level of stress & the parents level of stress. The more I stress and worry about how the baby will sleep, the harder it gets. The more stressed a parent is, the fussier the baby becomes. This is not the case with all babies of course. Every baby is different. However, babies can and DO sense our stress levels, and the calmer we are, the more reassurance they get, and the smoother a session is.

So relax Moms, I got you covered. You can sit back & relax, and I will do my absolute best to make this experience as enjoyable and as memorable as possible!

With all this being said, it is always a joy capturing babies with their eyes wide open. So if we do, why not! ;)


Your baby whisperer -